'It has a musical heritage to be proud of': Academy Music Group expands venue portfolio in Newcastle

'It has a musical heritage to be proud of': Academy Music Group expands venue portfolio in Newcastle

Academy Music Group Limited (AMG) has today (May 3) announced that the commercial operation of the 2,135-capacity Newcastle City Hall will transfer from Newcastle Theatre Royal Trust to Academy Music Group.

The deal follows an agreement between AMG, Fusion Lifestyle and Newcastle City Council. As part of the agreement, City Hall, will be rebranded O2 City Hall Newcastle from May 3 2019 as part of Academy Music Group and Live Nation Entertainment’s long-standing partnership with O2, which began in January 2009.

The announcement follows AMG’s recent addition to Group, the 3,500-capacity O2 Victoria Warehouse Manchester, in August 2018.  

Opened in 1927, the Grade-II-listed City Hall is a major part of the city’s cultural heritage and was one of Newcastle’s first dedicated concert venues. The Theatre Royal Trust took over the management of City Hall from Newcastle City Council in April 2016 and has made significant improvements to the building over the last three years.

Speaking about the transfer, Graham Walters, chief operating officer, Academy Music Group, said: “Newcastle has a musical heritage to be proud of. It’s a city that is famed for its nightlife, and live music especially plays a major part in that. Here at AMG, we are renowned for our experience in live entertainment and venues across the UK, particularly historic and listed buildings; and we’re delighted to be shaping one of Newcastle’s most iconic venues with the ambition to entertain and preserve its amazing history. We look forward to presenting a full range of live music and events and securing its future for many years to come.”

Newcastle has a musical heritage to be proud of

Graham Walters, Academy Music Group

Philip Bernays, chief executive, Newcastle Theatre Royal Trust said: “Academy Music Group is an industry leader in concert hall management and promotion.They have the industry expertise and resources to develop both programming as well as the building to ensure O2 City Hall Newcastle continues to thrive as one of the major venues for Newcastle and the North East.”

Forthcoming events at O2 City Hall Newcastle include UB40, The Vamps, Hozier, Eddie Izzard, Will Young and James Morrison.

Peter Kay, chief executive of Fusion Lifestyle, said: “We’re delighted to be working in partnership with Academy Music Group, the UK’s leading live entertainment operator. With its industry experience and unrivalled access to leading artists and entertainers, this move will continue the reinvigoration of City Hall - adding yet another reason why Newcastle is such an exciting and important visitor destination; City Baths and City Hall are both much-loved buildings filled with memories for the people of the region.”

Gareth Griffiths, head of sponsorship, O2, concluded: “O2 City Hall Newcastle is a fantastic addition to our O2 Academy estate and further demonstrates O2 and Academy Music Group’s commitment to live music in Newcastle. With Priority Tickets, O2 customers will have access to tickets 48 hours before general release. Furthermore, all Priority Tickets for this venue will be mobile only, helping to combat ticket fraud and ensuring tickets go to genuine fans so they can experience more live music and events in this historic building.”    

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